Rubicon Project, an ad exchange and ad tech provider, continues to bang the “programmatic direct” drum. But this time, the ad tech provider wants to let publishers get a little closer to the action.
Rubicon on Tuesday announced the launch of “Seller Cloud Self-Serve” platform, a programmatic direct ad platform that digital publishers can use on a self-serve basis. It is the ShinyAds platform -- the programmatic direct ad company Rubicon bought six months ago -- rebranded and integrated into Rubicon’s larger tech platform, explained Kaylie Smith, the company’s head of seller cloud.
“Our other direct order automation solution for guaranteed deals ('programmatic direct') is called Guaranteed Orders, which is the rebranded and integrated technology originally built by the team at iSocket.” That “Orders” platform was announced just over two months ago.
The “Sellers Cloud” self-serve platform is Rubicon’s first self-serve offering, but Smith asserted that Rubicon as a whole is not moving toward more of a self-serve model. “We will always offer our full-service solutions for premium buyers and sellers,” she said.
The new platform is geared for publishers looking to sell inventory and audiences to local and small businesses, or their agencies and resellers. These are “direct buys that typically fall below premium sellers’ minimum spend requirements,” explains Rubicon in a press release. The company contends these types of trades are currently difficult for publishers to monetize.
Kijiji, an eBay company, claims it has used the new platform to serve local and SMB advertisers, which has created a new revenue stream for the business.
“Self-Serve helps these sellers scale their sales operations, where otherwise they are constrained [or] limited to focusing on the largest deals,” Smith said. “It’s also invaluable to smaller or start-up sellers that may not have the funds to hire a sales force, and seek to automate their entire ad sales effort.”
The platform is a white-label service for both digital publishers and mobile app developers. Those media owners can sell ads on a one-to-one basis “via a simple UI embedded in their own site, processing credit card and PayPal payments,” explained Smith. The platform integrates with their ad servers, as well.